Hobart’s ‘museum of sex and death’ to help design Australia’s first dementia village | Cities

David Walsh, founder of the Museum of Old and New Art (Mona), has rejected reward for giving again to his Tasmanian hometown by selecting to arrange Australia’s most experimental and fashionable gallery there. “People keep saying, ‘It’s so great that you did this in the place where you were born’,” he said in 2016. “But I couldn’t give a fuck about where I was born.”

That assertion appears ever extra unlikely given the newest shocking transfer by the so-called “museum of sex and death”: Mona is in talks with Glenview, a supplier of aged care houses and providers.

David Walsh, founder of Mona. Photograph: Rémi Chauvin/MONA

The two organisations are in discussions about Australia’s first “dementia village”, sited simply outdoors the Tasmanian capital Hobart. Everything concerning the design of the village, Korongee, might be dementia-friendly. the 12 or so houses will probably be constructed on cul-de-sacs to hold the texture of native streets, and the companies – together with a cinema, grocery store and magnificence salon – can be staffed by 350 individuals with dementia coaching.

The pressures of an ageing and ailing inhabitants are already keenly felt in Tasmania, the “silver state” with the very best median age of any in Australia (at 42, it’s 4 years above the nationwide common). With almost one in five residents of Hobart aged 65 or older, Korongee is the type of enterprise that’s probably to fill a necessity. Glenview has acquired worldwide curiosity forward of its scheduled 2019 opening, however precedence for the 96 spots can be given to locals.

Mona is consulting on the village’s design, and there are plans for it to host an artist in residence. The museum’s co-CEO, Mark Wilsdon, says it’s in talks with Glenview over precisely how the collaboration will work. “We support progressive development of our local area and believe that Korongee is a fantastic initiative that could be of great benefit to the community,” he says.

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Collaborating with Mona makes good sense to Lucy O’Flaherty, the chief government of Glenview. “Glenview designs residential care – not villages like this – with cafes and performance spaces,” she says. “Mona knows how to do things differently, so we need to borrow their thinking.”

The village will probably be situated on a derelict plot purchased by the Glenview board a number of years in the past in Glenorchy, a working-class suburb about 7km north of Hobart, the place Walsh grew up. After making his fortune from a playing system he developed, Walsh established Mona in 2011 within the suburb of Berriedale, a couple of kilometres north.

“Mona knows how to do things differently, so we need to borrow their thinking” ... Hobart’s Mona gallery.

“Mona knows how to do things differently, so we need to borrow their thinking” … Hobart’s Mona gallery. Photograph: Jesse Hunniford

“He had a vision for what an art museum could be,” says James Vickers, a Glenview board member and the director of the University of Tasmania’s Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre. “What we are trying to achieve with Korongee is something that will be really successful, different and cutting-edge globally.”

Dementia is now the second leading cause of death in Australia, the place it impacts greater than 340,000 individuals. Without a medical breakthrough, this quantity is predicted to improve to greater than 900,000 by 2050, forcing aged care service suppliers to adapt.

Almost 65% of Glenview’s shoppers who reside in group residence care in Hobart have dementia or comparable circumstances, as do greater than 75% of these dwelling in a residential facility. Yet Glenview’s providers and residences aren’t designed to accommodate their circumstances.

It is an identical story in residential houses around the globe. “I realised we needed to go from being a generalist provider to looking at a more niche service that specialised in dementia support,” says O’Flaherty. “It was an ‘aha’ moment.”

O’Flaherty launched into a worldwide fact-finding mission, visiting residential and aged care houses all over the world to see which have been best serving individuals with dementia and their households. Her search took her to Hogeweyk, a gated village near Amsterdam that’s house totally to individuals dwelling with dementia. Residents have been discovered to stay longer and take fewer drugs.

But Korongee won’t be a reproduction of Hogeweyk; O’Flaherty says their workforce is already engaged on a unique mannequin, knowledgeable by the teachings that Hogeweyk has discovered because it opened in 2009.

“They built Hogeweyk in a gated setting. They said to me, ‘If we’re going to build from scratch [again], we need to make sure the village is connected to the community,’ so from day one we have consulted with businesses like Mona.”

Dutch dementia village, gated community called De Hogewejk in Weesp where people with dementia are cared for. The big square in ‘De Hogeweyk’

Korongee won’t be a replica of Hogeweyk; the Glenview workforce are engaged on a mannequin knowledgeable by the experiences of Dutch facility. Photograph: Anita Edridge/De Hogeweyk

Vickers argues that Walsh purposely constructed the museum in Hobart’s northern suburbs to give a cultural and financial increase to the world. He hopes Korongee might be equally transformative.

“We could have built it in a more affluent catchment area where there would be people with large amounts of money,” Vickers says. “But I also grew up in the northern suburbs, and not a lot of people from Glenorchy would end up going to university – they end up in trades and services, and they deserve access to good and affordable aged care in their final years.”

Construction on the village has already begun. Applicants might be matched with housemates who share comparable cultures, pursuits and backgrounds, utilizing a survey developed by the University of Tasmania. Staff will even be screened for comparable values.

Korongee is predicted to value $25m and is being collectively funded by Glenview, the business superannuation fund Hesta, the social financing organisation Social Ventures Australia and the commonwealth authorities. O’Flaherty says financial modelling exhibits that “it will cost no more than any average residential facility in Australia” for concessional residents on a pension.

Tasmania’s ageing problem is exclusive, says Lisa Denny, a demographer and a analysis fellow with the Institute for the Study of Social Change, as a result of in addition to its present residents dwelling longer, the state additionally attracts many older individuals. Retirees typically select it for its bucolic setting, whereas youthful individuals depart after ending faculty to additional their schooling or discover work.

“We need more planning like Korongee for a state ageing more rapidly than the rest of the country,” she says. “I think its model and the intent behind it is also really important as it shows a shift in thinking about ageing.”

Society can typically devalue its aged, in addition to those that help look after them in typically low-paid and low-skilled roles, Denny says. “Korongee presents an opportunity to reduce that negativity around moving into your last stage of life.”

These damaging stereotypes have typically seen Hogeweyk be compared to the 1998 movie The Truman Show, the place Jim Carrey’s character is unaware his complete actuality is staged. O’Flaherty can’t stand the comparability; Korongee goals to help Hobart’s group perceive “there is nothing to be frightened about dementia”, she says.

“What we are creating is real life.”

In collaboration with Guardian Australia, Guardian Cities is devoting a week to Australian cities. Share your ideas with Guardian Cities on Twitter, Facebookand Instagram utilizing the hashtag #AusWk

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